Project marks the Great War

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Young volunteers have been learning about life as a soldier in the First World War.

Pupils from TyneMet College and Woodlawn School have been taking part in Trenchbook 2015, a Heritage Lottery funded project delivered by North Tyneside VODA to mark the centenary of the Great War.

The young people explored what real life would have been like for young soldiers and to put themselves in the shoes of someone in the trenches.

They attended a series of workshops with historical re-enactors Time Bandits, including role play, food tasting and writing poetry, and enjoyed visits to the Durham Light Infantry Museum and the Discovery Museum.

They then used their experiences to create fictional diary entries of soldiers and imagined how they would have used social media sites to keep in touch with friends and loved ones.

One participant, Chloe Price, said: “It’s been awesome learning about life in the trenches.

“It has made me realise how tough life must have been for soldiers and how much they must have missed their families.

“The best parts for me have been making trench art like the soldiers used to make from old shells, and cooking trench stew.”

Jo Woolley, VODA’s youth volunteer worker who led the project, said: “This has been the most inspiring and moving project to work on and a great way to commemorate young soldiers that served during World War I.

“The young people have really thrown themselves into the spirit of 1914 and used their imagination so vividly.”

The project also saw a temporary floral display installed in the window of TyneMet College, created by florist technician Michelle Humble, incorporating artwork produced by the young participants.

A commemorative brochure is currently being produced as part of the project, which will include the poetry and images produced, and will be available from North Tyneside VODA on (0191) 643 2626.